John Scalzi's 'Old Man's War' series of novels began only six years ago, but it already boasts a glowing reputation among sci-fi fans as being one of, if not the, best series in recent memory. Fan base aside, it's kind of hard to argue when three of the novels in a four-part series have been nominated for Best Novel at the Hugo Awards. And when a series gains that kind of consistent critical acclaim, it's only a matter of time before Hollywood decides it wants in on the action.

Paramount Pictures has bought the rights to the 'Old Man's War' series and have already pinned down Wolfgang Petersen to direct and David Self to adapt. Check out the plot description for the first novel straight from Amazon:

With his wife dead and buried, and life nearly over at 75, John Perry takes the only logical course of action left him: he joins the army. Now better known as the Colonial Defense Force (CDF), Perry's service-of-choice has extended its reach into interstellar space to pave the way for human colonization of other planets while fending off marauding aliens. The CDF has a trick up its sleeve that makes enlistment especially enticing for seniors: the promise of restoring youth. After bonding with a group of fellow recruits who dub their clique the Old Farts, Perry finds himself in a new body crafted from his original DNA and upgraded for battle, including fast-clotting "smartblood" and a brain-implanted personal computer. All too quickly the Old Farts are separated, and Perry fights for his life on various alien-infested battlegrounds.

Though the idea of a physically debilitated person transferring his consiousness into a more able-bodied genetic creation in order to go fight a war is going to make some audiences think of 'Avatar,' keep in mind that Scalzi's first novel was published before James Cameron's record-smashing blockbuster ever went in front of cameras. If anything, 'Old Man's War' is closer in tone and theme to Joe Haldeman's truly oustanding novel 'The Forever War' (which was also recently optioned for the big screen), about veteran soldiers who are essentially immune to the effects of time while on the battlefield.

A production time frame isn't mentioned in Deadline's story, but considering producer Scott Stuber's recent track record ('Battleship,' '47 Ronin' and 'Safe House'), 'Old Man's War' probably won't linger in turn around for very long. As for whether or not the director of the 'Poseidon' remake is a good match for hard sci-fi, well, we might not be convinced, but at least Scalzi himself seems satisfied.